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Medical News & Perspectives
January 5, 2011

Report Promotes Depression Screening for Mothers During Pediatric Visits

JAMA. 2011;305(1):26-27. doi:10.1001/jama.2010.1895

Pediatricians should integrate screening for postpartum depression in mothers into well-child visits, according to a clinical report by the American Academy of Pediatrics' (AAP’s) Committee on the Psychosocial Aspects of Child and Family Development.

Many of the between 7% to 13% of women who experience depression after birth go undiagnosed. They may have only 1 or 2 postpartum visits with an obstetrician shortly after birth, during which depression screening may or may not occur. The committee argues that pediatricians who see parents and infants several times during the first year are well placed to help identify women who may need help (Earls MF et al. Pediatrics. 2010;126[5]:1032-1039).